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Acts 6:1-7

Choosing of the Seven

Now [a]at this time while the disciples were increasing in number, a complaint arose on the part of the [b]Hellenistic Jews against the nativeHebrews, because their widows were being overlooked in the daily serving of foodSo the twelve summoned the [c]congregation of the disciples and said, “It is not desirable for us to neglect the word of God in order to serve tables. Therefore, brethren, select from among you seven men of good reputation, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we may put in charge of this task. But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the [d]ministry of the word.” The statement found approval with the whole [e]congregation; and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit, and Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas and [f]Nicolas, a [g]proselyte from Antioch. And these they brought before the apostles; and after praying, they laid their hands on them.

The word of God kept on spreading; and the number of the disciples continued to increase greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests were becoming obedient to the faith.

Discussion Questions

January 6th, 2019

Discussion Questions:

1. In verses 1-4 we see how a complaint in the church was handled by the leadership: not a yes or no situation, but a remedy that included an additional set of leaders to head up the widows’ food ministry. WHAT DO YOU SEE AS SPIRIT GUIDED IN THIS REMEDY AS OPPOSED TO A FLAT ANSWER TO KEEP THINGS THE WAY THEY WERE OR TO STOP THE FOOD MINISTRY ALTOGETHER?

2. Some may charge that the apostles were trying to avoid the more hands on and tedious work of supervising the widows’ ministry, and instead devote themselves “to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.”. (verse 4). WHY WAS THE APOSTLES’ RESPONSE IMPORTANT NOT ONLY FOR THEM BUT FOR THE CHURCH? Reflect on further New Testament teaching in 1 Timothy 5:17 and 11 Timothy 4:1-5 to help here.

3. The names of the seven men put forward by the congregation to head the ministry to widows are all Greek names (reflecting the Hellenistic Jews mentioned in verse 1). HOW CAN WE FOLLOW THIS PATTERN OF SENSITIVITY IN OUR CHURCH TODAY? WHAT EXAMPLES HAVE YOU SEEN OF THIS ACTUALLY HAPPENING?